Cornwall Marine Network (CMN) has appointed Peter Child as its new chairman of the board.

He succeeds Michael Brougham, board director for 15 years and chairman since 2015, who has stepped down due to retirement.

Peter runs a successful consultancy business in marine, renewables and management and joined Waves4Power in 2015 as their UK representative. Before this he was managing director of A&P Falmouth Ltd and was also on the A&P Group main board. He is also CEO for Cornish Pirates rugby team and is working to deliver the Stadium for Cornwall.

Commenting on his appointment, Peter said: "I am honoured to be the new chairman of Cornwall Marine Network and take on the role from Michael who has decided to retire after many years of excellent leadership. I have previously worked with Cornwall Marine Network and Paul Wickes when I was at A&P and know what an excellent job the whole team does.

"I was delighted to have the opportunity to join them in 2015 as a director and now to become chair this year. Paul and the team do a thoroughly professional job and have built a really positive reputation with everyone they have worked with and helped over the years. Cornwall Marine Network truly represents the marine and engineering sector in Cornwall and the board and I will look to provide governance and critical advice when needed. We will look grow the company going forward and together meet the challenges ahead."

In 2002, as founding board director, Michael Brougham wrote the extensive papers needed to apply for European Union funding, from Cornwall’s first Objective One programme, to establish CMN. He worked on a voluntary basis to build up an initial cluster of 120 marine companies, and to establish a £1M programme of training and marketing support from 2003-2006.

Since then CMN has embraced over 350 companies, engaging in programmes including workforce skills development, apprenticeships; funding for growth and innovation.

“The marine sector is a vital element of Cornwall’s economy, with both traditional skills and advanced technology," said Michael. "Cornwall Marine Network is an excellent example of how private sector companies can collaborate, with public sector partners, to address skills, growth and innovation through a not-for-profit business support network.”

“It has been an inspiration to be involved with Cornwall’s dynamic and innovative marine sector for the past 15 years, and a privilege to work with Cornwall Marine Network’s superlative CEO Paul Wickes, and his enthusiastic, knowledgeable and innovative staff. I am sad to be leaving, but very confident that the new chairman, Peter Child, with his immense knowledge of both public and private sector marine players, will guide Cornwall Marine Network to yet more achievements in the future, and I wish him every success.”

Michael leaves on a positive note with CMN winning best apprenticeship agency 2017 at the South West Enterprise Awards, which are in their first year, conducted by SME News part of AI Global Media.

Entrants are nominated and through a rigorous process shortlisted, with a research and judging panel determining the winners.

“We are delighted that the high quality of our apprenticeship support to small businesses has been formally recognised by SW Enterprise Awards," said Paul. "It is proof that the expertise and hard work of our excellent team is well and truly making a difference."